In most cases, school leaders start their tenure focusing on the school’s culture. As you know from your previous assignments, the readings in the program, and from your professional experiences thus far, a school’s culture can be complex and deeply embedded in the beliefs, language, and behaviors of the stakeholders. Remember, culture is a major theme in the ELCC and PSEL standards. Moreover, your position as a new school leader will have an effect on the school’s culture (simply because of the change in leadership). As you get closer to finishing this degree program, consider how you will begin your future tenure as a school leader.
Read the "Shaping School Culture" case study to inform the assignment.
Part 1: Case Analysis
In 250-500 words, respond to the case study by addressing the following:
Part 2: Rationale
Support the case analysis with a 250-500 word rationale explaining the solutions you chose and how each solution:
Cite the case as well as 2-3 scholarly resources.
If possible, share your case analysis with your principal mentor and make revisions based on his or her feedback before submitting with Part 1.
While APA style format is not required for the body of this assignment, solid academic writing is expected, and any source documents should be referenced using APA documentation guidelines, which can be found in the APA Style Guide, located in the Student Success Center.
This assignment uses a rubric. Review the rubric prior to beginning the assignment to become familiar with the expectations for successful completion.
Case Study: Shaping School Culture
You have served as an assistant principal for one year in a middle school (grades 4-8) that has received a grade of “D” as a school accountability label. Due to recent changes and the retirement of the principal, you apply for the open position and the Superintendent selects you to be the principal for the next school year. Your knowledge of your internal and external community, along with the various school and district systems, plays a critical role in your summer planning for the upcoming school year.
Your school has had a reputation of being a “tough” school. Your student body is made up of mostly lower-income families who live primarily in single-family homes, condominiums, and federally subsidized apartments. Demographically, the school is culturally diverse, with Hispanic students making up the largest ethnic group. You also have the highest African American student population within the district. The school has approximately 700 students, 33 full-time general education teachers, 1 full-time special education teacher and 1 gifted education teacher. Your teaching staff has remained stable in key areas, but you know that you will need to hire seven teachers across the grade levels. A large percentage of your teachers are experienced veterans, many of whom have outlived at least 14 administrators that have come through the campus.
As you sit in your office in July, you become overwhelmed as you begin sifting through numerous piles of information – student achievement data, the School Improvement Plan (SIP), discipline data, teacher observations, the previous principal’s files, etc. You know you have to find ways to positively influence your outcomes, in particular student achievement, as you are considered by the state as being in need of school improvement. You also know that your student achievement outcomes will not change unless the student discipline data improves. Bottom line, it is obvious that students are missing a tremendous amount of instructional time due to behavioral issues and the assigned consequences. Where do you begin?
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